We all need sleep. A good night’s sleep does wonders to our well-being. Lack of sleep affects not just our health but also our mood, our physical performance, and even the way we think. The quality of sleep is just as important as the quantity of sleep we get. There are various factors affecting sleep. One of which is the quality of the mattress we sleep on.
Casper is a startup that launched an innovative mattress in 2014. Its product was named one of TIME Magazine’s Best Inventions of 2015. Constantin Eis, Casper’s Co-founder and Managing Director for Europe, shares how this breakthrough product is disrupting the sleep industry.
Why did you choose to penetrate the mattress and sleep industry?
Constantin Eis: Traditionally, the industry has been slow to adapt to changing consumer habits, with people having to make decisions that will affect them for the next decade based on a half-hour experience in a stuffy, out-of-town showroom. It was clear to us that the sleep industry was ripe for disruption, and based on consumer response around the world, introducing a universally comfortable mattress with a 100-night free trial was just the way to do it.
In just two short years, the brand has achieved cult status through how it has reinvented the sleep category – a reinvention that has often been mimicked but never bettered. This has demonstrated the need to reinvigorate a market so important, yet so outdated.
IN THE PHOTO: Constantin Eis, Casper Co-founder and Managing Director for Europe. PHOTO CREDIT: CASPER.COM
How do you position Casper in the market?
C.E.: Casper is the original innovator disrupting the way mattresses are made and sold to consumers. Introducing the one-size-fits-all mattress to the market, the Casper mattress provides the perfect sleep for everyone!
What makes Casper unique and different from other mattresses in the market?
C.E.: When we started this journey two years ago, we couldn’t have imagined just how tired customers are with the old model and the products available to them. Casper is all about creating a lifestyle and not just a series of products. Casper’s products together create an unrivaled sleeping environment. We have a 20-member engineering and design team at Casper made up of former IDEO engineers – which collectively holds over 50 patents. The team is based in San Francisco, where they researched, designed, prototyped, and constantly assessed, reassessed and redeveloped our mattresses, pillows, and sheets, to develop the final products to perfectly meet the needs of individuals.
PHOTO CREDIT: CASPER.COM
Your products (mattresses, pillows, sheets, foundation) are made of environmentally friendly materials. What does sustainability mean to you? How do you integrate sustainability in your process and in your products?
C.E.: Sustainability is incredibly important in the world we live in and being able to offer environmentally friendly products, whilst adapting products to continuously improve consumers’ lifestyle, has been key to sourcing the right materials all over the world. Our expansion has given us the perfect opportunity to evaluate all data and re-design our mattress using local materials and goods.
And, in an effort to create the best quality product and offer value for money, we chose 100 percent Supima cotton. Supima is one of the strongest and softest materials in the world, which was last year voted the Premium Fiber Brand of the Year in 2015. Our sheets are also Oeko-Tex 100 certified — the safety standard for textiles and bedding products.
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What is the consumer insight behind your mission to help everyone achieve their best life possible?
C.E.: We created Casper because better sleep makes for better living. We spend a third of our day in bed, so it’s been our focus from day one to do for sleep what Nike has done for sports. It’s about making the sleep that people get count.
Central to Casper’s design and manufacturing process is a community of 25,000 customers who test hundreds of prototypes on an ongoing basis. This has allowed us to really take advantage of all of the data we’ve been able to accumulate and evaluate it to constantly make our products better. This is the case for all of our outrageously comfortable products and we work closely with Casper Lab in San Francisco, a dedicated innovation unit of our most enthusiastic customers, to look at ways to improve existing products as well as work on new prototypes in our mission to provide the ultimate sleep environment.
In the process of producing Casper, did you consider any sleep disorder that you intend to help relieve?
C.E.: Bad sleep is a very real problem for many consumers out there. An uncomfortable mattress can cause drowsiness; back pain and even insomnia, limiting the way people want to live. We realized there were huge health benefits to having a good night’s sleep which was why we’ve incorporated four different layers into our sleep-cool mattress to bolster support, help durability, and provide a good bounce.
PHOTO CREDIT: CASPER.COM
Casper does not only produce mattresses for humans but for dogs too! Can you give us a sneak peek of what other products we can expect from Casper?
C.E.: We launched the Casper mattress in 2014, but understood that providing the perfect night’s sleep didn’t stop there. That’s why we’ve extended our product line to include cotton sheets and the perfect pillow, both of which compliment our universally-comfortable ethos.
We’ve also had a fantastic response to our durable dog mattress, which we recently launched in the United States. The dog bed has been engineered and designed by the same team that’s behind the Casper mattress and is all about dog behavior. Then also have a look at these brilliant dog beds that are personalized so that you can add a photo of your dog (or whatever image you’d like), so these just look amazing.
Dogs sleep rougher than humans, so it took a lot of iterations on the prototypes to get something as durable as we wanted and as comfortable as we wanted. But we did it, and dog owners love it. We’re hoping to introduce this into the European market in the near future. In the meantime, you can give your dogs the best sleep possible with the help of products from companies like My Itchy Dog.
Casper is currently available in Canada, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the UK, and the US. Where else do you intend to expand in the next 5 to 10 years?
C.E.: Our expansion over the last two years has been exponential and it’s all down to the great brand, products, and services we’ve built up. In fact, we’re one of the fastest growing consumer brands of all time and our recent expansion into Europe has been a big step for us in keeping our success story going forward. We launched in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland in June 2016, and launched in the UK in August 2016.
With our expansion into Europe and our incessant efforts to design new products to create an unrivaled sleeping environment we are always looking at ways to meet consumer demand in other markets and are continually looking for ways to further our mission of being the global leader in sleep innovation.
Who usually purchases Casper? What do you think is the reason behind it?
C.E.: Casper makes universally comfortable products, so we can truly say that Casper makes products for everyone. If you’re in the market for better sleep, then Casper will make that happen. And you don’t even have to be human as some of our best customers are four-legged!
IN THE PHOTO: Casper dog mattress. PHOTO CREDIT: CASPER.COM
Why did you choose the name, Casper?
C.E: Casper’s name came about because Luke Sherwin, co-founder and Chief Creative Officer, lived with a 6’6” German guy called Kasper, who slept on a mattress that was too small for him. When we came up with the concept and idea for our brand, we always came back to this story, so we decided it was a very fitting name, Casper. We thanked him by making him one of the first recipients of our now award-winning mattresses.
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Casper (casper.co.uk) is a sleep brand that launched in 2014 with one perfect mattress sold directly to consumers — eliminating commission-driven, inflated prices. Its award-winning sleep surface was developed in-house, has a sleek design, and is delivered in a small, “how did they do that?” sized box. A year and a half after launching the mattress, Casper expanded its universally comfortable product line, which now includes a perfect pillow and sheets. The company is one of the fastest growing consumer brands of all time, earning $100M in revenue in 2015 — its first full calendar year. Casper was named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies in the World, and its eponymous mattress was crowned one of TIME Magazine’s Best Inventions of 2015. Follow Casper on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.